In writing about the Roes of Luton, I’ve overlooked the existence of a possible third brother – George – to go alongside Peter and William, and I’m grateful to my fellow researcher Margaret Lewis for drawing him to my attention.

George Roe was a Luton shoemaker, like Peter and William, and according to the record of his second marriage, his father was shoemaker John Roe – the same information that we find on William’s second marriage certificate. George was born in Luton in 1811, just like William, so it’s possible they were not only brothers but also twins. Another connection is evident in George’s marriage, on 14th January 1832, to Lucy Fensome. Born in May 1809, Lucy was one of the six children of John Fensome and his wife Sarah. In my earlier post about William, I noted that at the time of the 1851 census there were a number of Fensomes living with or visiting William and his wife Sarah in Barbers Lane, Luton. This is because Sarah’s sister, Mary Huckle, had married Joseph Fensome. I’m not yet sure how the two branches of the Fensome family tree are connected.

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Record of Lucy Fensome’s birth in the Luton Baptist Register

Lucy’s birth, like those of her siblings, was recorded in the Register of Births kept by the Luton Baptists. My Roe ancestors in Biggleswade were Baptists, as were those in Pirton with whom they are probably connected: this record is the first (albeit indirect) evidence I’ve found of a Baptist link with the Luton Roes, and it strengthens the case for them being part of the wider Roe family.

George and Lucy Roe would have two children – Emma, born in 1832, and Sarah in 1836. In 1841 the young family were living in Adelaide Terrace, George Street, in Luton, just a few houses away from Peter Roe and his family. Lucy seems to have died in 1847, at the age of 36, leaving George with two young daughters. Towards the end of that year, he married his second wife Hannah Jones, who had been born a Fensome. She was the daughter of another Joseph Fensome, and his wife Ann, who was yet another Huckle. In 1834 Hannah had married Henry Jones and they had a daughter, Harriet, born in 1836, and a son, Henry Thomas, in 1839, before Henry senior’s early death in 1840.

At the time of the 1851 census, George, described as a cordwainer, and Hannah, were living in Park Street West, Luton, with George’s daughters Emma, 17, and Sarah, 15, from his first marriage, and Harriet, 14, Hannah’s daughter from her first marriage, all three working with Hannah as straw bonnet makers, as well as Hannah’s son Henry, 12, an errand boy, and George and Hannah’s own infant daughter Elizabeth, aged 10 months.

George and Hannah Roe would have another daughter, Annie Isabel, in 1856, before George’s death at the age of 47 in the following year. I don’t think their daughter Elizabeth survived, but Annie continued to live with her widowed mother. In 1861, when Hannah was 46, and Annie was 5, they were together in Albert Road, Luton, where Hannah was working as a bonnet sewer. However, by 1871 they had moved to London, where they were living in Charles Street, Knightsbridge – though Hannah was still doing similar work, as a straw hat platter.

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Nineteenth-century Knightstbridge (via gravelroots.net)

Five years later, when she was 20, Annie Isabel Roe married Edward Pausey at St George’s church, Hanover Square. Edward was the son of a Chelsea leather seller, and would himself work in the boot trade, so perhaps there was a Roe family connection. The 1881 census finds Edward and Annie living in Middle Street, Brompton. Annie’s mother Hannah is not mentioned, but since she would die in Kensington in the following year, she can’t have been far away.

Edward and Annie Pausey would have three children – Edward, Annie and Isabel, all apparently born in the Haggerston area. In 1911, now in their fifties, the couple were living with Edward’s parents in Brompton. Electoral registers from the 1920s find Edward and Annie living in Baxendale Road, Bethnal Green. I’m not sure when or where Annie died, but there’s a record of an Edward Pausey dying in 1931, in Hitchin – coincidentally, the town where I’m writing this, and just a few miles from Luton, where his late wife Annie Isabel Roe had been born.